Friday, 26 February 2016

Warm fuzzies

 Hello peeps, just a quick update for a couple of cards I made recently.
The top one is using pre-die cut red felt and I thought it went really well with the "warm fuzzies" sentiment (since the felt is fuzzy).  I thought this would be ideal for anything from Valentines, anniversaries, birthdays or even just sending a 'hug in the post' to a friend.

The next card uses patterned paper, a die cut satin ribbon along the edge and a couple of glass hearts.

Nice and simple cards this week, though for a change these didn't use anything from my scrap box (I need to remedy that with my next makes!).

Happy crafting

Wednesday, 24 February 2016


So after last week off I am back into things and on my desk this time I have been tackling my scrap box.  Forcing myself to be inventive and make some cards from the scraps and now I am sorting them into A5 clear plastic folders (only £1 for a pack of them in poundland-bargain!). 
I am favouring colour themes for the sorting (brown, pink/reds, blues) and in the middle is a folder of useful bits (technical term!) such as postcards, clothes labels, magazine...lots of different items that I have used in the past to create new cards from.

On the right (Big Bang Data leaflet) are my leaflets from London  (see previous post) to remind me what we saw as I back up my photos over the next few days.
My "Man Bites Dog" cards this week.....'Nurse Blames Wall St'.  All I can say to that is if the nurses joined in with the doctors regarding Jeremy Hunts so-called reforms then the papers would be having even more of a field day!  

Happy What's on Your Workdesk Wednesday



Monday, 22 February 2016

Big Ben scraps

Following on from my previous post about our trip to London I thought I would post a picture of my latest card.

This is made up from my scrap box and is another wallpaper sample!

The original wallpaper is just black line work but I added some watercolour to give it a bit more of an urban sketching feel.

Slowly I am working my way through my wallpaper samples-I didn't realise just how much I had amassed!  Even though they are free in the UK, there is no point them just sitting in my room.  Much better they are turned into a card and passed onto someone else.

Happy crafting

Sunday, 21 February 2016

London via body snatchers through street art and on to Tibet!

 Last week hubby and I went to London for a few days.  We both love London and usually manage to see some different parts of the city to others (and the fact that my brother, sister-in-law and new baby niece live there is a bonus!).

We stayed close to the Thames as its central to a lot of areas we like and easy to get buses to most places and some lovely walks along the Thames.

This blog post if quite photo heavy-you have been warned!

After walking along the Thames path we cut up towards St Pauls towards the Salvation Army HQ and spotted this church tucked away.  If you are in the area the Sally Army has a fantastic cafe. SO cheap and a great selection, sadly we were quite late in the day so all the veggie food had sold out, but we will definitely be making a return visit.  We lunched at Mangio (in the very cool sounding Knightrider Street) a great italian, really cheap fast italian food of a box of handmade stuffed pasta, made in front of you, sauce, salad and bread for £7.50)

 The view of St Pauls always takes my breath away.  I have photographed it from SO many different viewpoints over the years.

Our next visit was to otherwise known as the Wedding Cake Church (as its spire resembles one)

In the Medieval Chapel this plaque commemorates the family and the staff of Associated Newspapers who lost their lives in the World Wars.

 There is also a Roman mosaic pavement and an exhibition about body snatchers

 You can see why it is called the Wedding Cake Church to many!

 On one of our walks we stumbled across this, love the old tiles on the outside of the building

 At the Museum of Film we spotted these  (we didn't go in but this was in the lobby)

We also popped into the British Library, as we often do and this time there was an exhibition of Alice in Wonderland, there was a no photography sign up so no photos of that, instead here is an advertising sign I spotted on our walk to the library (starting off in fleet street) and  this bank all painted was opposite St Pancras station

 In Westminster (New Burlington Mews) I spotted this alleyway with fabulous gates and wall paintings

 and as we cut through from Carnaby street to Soho this mosaic caught my eye

Not sure where I spotted these two (I think one was in Islington on a trip to Cass Art)

 These pigeons are by Patrick Murphy and are a response to homelessness in London (the notice about them explains they are often seen as unwanted guests-banished from centres and branded a nuisance) and helps raise money for St Barnabus on Greek Street.

 We also visited the British Museum.  There is SO much to see there we usually only do one exhibition on each visit, this time it was the Egyptian rooms.

 I couldn't resist a quick look round one of the textile exhibition there as well though!
 This is the body mask of the serpent demon Kaliya and was made in a monastery where Krishna's heroic life is re-enacted each year
 These masks also form part of a dance where the crane demon Bakasura is 
killed in the forest by Krishna.

 This is a weaving technique (Lampas) which is now extinct throughout the whole of east Asia. During 1500-1800 they produced textiles with a ground woven with one set of warp and weft threads, and a pattern woven with another set of warp and weft.

Another day I took hubby to the UCL Institute of  Neurology and Neurosurgery (I know how to treat my man!!).  This was for an exhibition in their library of Embroidered Minds a collaboration about the epilepsy of the family of William Morris.
 It was a thought provoking exhibition and something very different to do on holiday.

 I love the old buildings in London, there is always a photo opportunity, even if it is an old fire escape!

 Or even one of the old signs
 As we wandered around the area we stumbled across this blue plaque

Without a doubt, the Thames at night is a beautiful  sight

 They even lit up this building especially for Valentines weekend!

We also popped into Somerset House for the bigbangdata exhibition (not the best I have seen) and the Wellcome Institute for Tibet's Secret Temple exhibition (which was awe inspiring).  

So there you have it, another trip around London and some quality time spent with the family.
Always a shame when it comes to an end, especially since the buses in London are so frequent and seem to work really well-unlike Bristol!

Happy crafting

Friday, 12 February 2016

Two down, seven letters

Afternoon all, I thought I would do a quick update to show my latest card.

The picture is not the greatest in the world but I am hoping you get the general idea?

The question is can you guess what is it made from?


I found some puzzle wallpaper in a DIY store and asked for a sample piece.  
When I got home I cut them out, matted and layered and then mounted them and viola, a card!

No clues to the crossword unfortunately, but that doesn't preclude you from making your
 own up I suppose?

Happy crafting

Wednesday, 10 February 2016


Arrggg.....Wednesday already?!  I cannot believe that I am the only one that finds  days and weeks just slip by!
So Wednesday means 'Whats on Your Workdesk Wednesday" where crafters from across the globe share their spaces of shame!

Well, in an attempt to correct the imbalance that I have been experiencing for about 4 months (too long hours at work and no time for family, friends or crafting) I spent a lot of the weekend crafting.  Luckily it was blowing a gale and chucking it down so I didn't feel too much of a need to go outside for anything other than a bit of a walk to get the joints moving.

I started my next month of the chinese whispers circle journal on the CollaborART blog 
(my previous update gave details of this) so I cannot show this until I have emailed the 
next participant in the list at the end of February (plus it is not finished, but I made a 
good headstart so the pressure is off for this month).  

I also decided to make a few Valentines cards (I should have been making my brothers birthday card whose birthday IS valentines day...but I am procrastinating on that!).  
I made one for my hubby and a few in case anyone at work would like to buy one for a charity donation. 

The desk is filled with the left over papers, stamps and on the left a couple of resin hearts I made but haven't used.  I am leaving it all out just in case inspiration hits and I come up with the best card yet!!

My "Man Bites Dog" cards this week read like a Dan Browne script-
 'Bizarre Priest Stabs Model' 

So why not join us and show us your desk?  Full details can be found here

Happy crafting


Sunday, 7 February 2016

CollaborART fabric project

 On the Collabor-ART blog I belong to we are doing a "Chinese Whispers" style circle journal.  
It involves choosing a theme (mine is Architecture) and making something with some fabric/stitching in it.  
You then email the picture to the next person on the list along with a small envelope of haberdashery goodies.  They then use your picture and maybe an item or two from the envelope to influence/make the next item and so on until it goes all the way round back to you.
Now the good thing about this is that you don't have to trust your precious handmade item to the post or take time off work to get to the post office as its done by email.

I have posted off my envelop so thought I would share with you my first 'make'.

I thought I would make a fabric journal on the architecture theme.  To make life easier I thought I would make the individual pages first and then think about bringing it all together in a journal once they are finished (NO idea how to go about that, but I am sure it cannot be that difficult!)

 I decided to make another reverse appliqué picture so I started with calico, black fabric (that I cut an archway out of the middle) and various green fabrics  for hills.  the whole lot was stuck with bondaweb and backed with cheap muslin.  I then drew a stone archway on parchment paper and pinned this to the fabric and machine stitched the design.  The cute pin cushion on the right was a gift a couple of years ago from fellow WOYWWer Lunchlady Jan and gets used for all my sewing sessions.
You then tear away all the paper to reveal the fabric underneath
 Then you need nerves of steel as you cut into the fabric, being really careful not to cut into the layers below!

 I then machine stitched the tree trunk and shading for the window ledge

 Then I hand embroidered the leaves using seed stitch and a variegated green thread

My first page of my new project finished (well, until assembly of the journal that is!).

Happy crafting

Saturday, 6 February 2016

Westpoint show and some more street art

 Now I doubt I am very different from many of you, working too many hours in the pay the bills job not leaving enough time for socialising, crafting or family? Sounds familiar eh?

So, after realising that I had worked almost 3 days unpaid overtime in the past few weeks I decided to take Friday off in lieu and hubby and I went down to the Craft4crafters show in Westpoint, Exeter (hubby earned some serious bonus points for this!).

The show is a reasonable size but sadly, for me, it wasn't that great.  Many of the stalls were selling what I traditionally think of (probably unfairly) was slightly 'older' styles.  There was a lot of 'pretty' patterned fabrics, pastels, a LOT of decoupage or kits where you can assemble a card from the components only in the kit.  Nothing wrong with that...but it is just not my 'thing'.

There were some nice pieces on display though, such as this egg tempura icon (as we discussed it the lady who made it came over to chat as she was pleased someone actually recognised the medium she used). Loved the frame she made from metal too.

This piece was by Steph Francis.
 I love her dyed silks and embellishments they are so beautiful to work with.

We walked round the show twice but all I bought is a magazine (the new issue of Workbox...not in the shops yet so pleased with that) some cellophane bags (that were on my shopping list) and one sheet of card!!!  I know, that was it!

On the way back we broke the journey back up the M5 in the driving rain by stopping off in Glastonbury, a favourite haunt of my late teens/early twenties when I bought my first car.

We checked out some of the new street art

 before a quick cuppa and heading home back in the wind and rain!

I hope you all have a lovely weekend, what ever you are up to.


Thursday, 4 February 2016

February 365 Challenge

Hello peeps, its almost the weekend!  Woo-hoo!!

Today I thought I would share my latest month in Kate Cranes 365 journal challenge. 
 I have been doing this for years and all it takes is a small drawing or sentence to sum up your day.  Once your months page is prepped it only takes a minute which is why I probably have stuck to this challenge for so long!!

My pages were coloured with TH distress stains then I overlaid a circle stencils and sequin waste which I inked through adding a few stencilled numbers.  I then added some white acrylic with an old gift card and then added the date squares and doodled a border.

I then stamped the month in black ink.  Coloured it with red posca pens and added some red stickles glitter (I bought it over 5 years ago and its STILL going strong!),  I stamped and cut out some hearts and doodled string to turn them into balloons.
There you have it...all 29 days ready for February.

Happy crafting